At first glance, it may seem that this may not have been an incredibly busy day for the Savior, especially compared to yesterday. However, looking at the events of today, it was actually quite significant.
First, as the Savior and His group of followers
returned to Jerusalem from Bethany, Jesus found Himself hungry. He
approached a fig tree hoping to find fruit despite the fact that it was
not the season for figs. He issued a curse upon the fig tree that it
would never again yield fruit for man. The tree than withered and died.
This curse upon the fig tree has always struck me as interesting,
because it seems so out of Jesus' healing and loving nature.
as I read the few verses that followed Matthew's account of the fig
tree and than considered other writings, two interesting lessons came
out. In Matthew 21:21-22, after being questioned about the fig tree, the
Lord responded by giving short lesson on faith and prayer. Is it
possible that Jesus was taking an opportunity to show his disciples, and
us, how with faith we could do anything?
Also, many sources teach
that this fig tree was an example of what would happen to Israel. Just
as the fig tree was unprepared for its Master and faced destruction, his
people also faced destruction as they were not prepared to accept Him.
also spent much of this day in the teaching. Unlike His previous visits
to the temple, where He taught in the courtyards, during this week He
teaches in the temple. The chief priests, scribes and elders were
present for His teachings and confronted Him demanding to know what gave
Him authority to be there. He also gives the parable of the wicked
husbandmen, which is a parable about them. Knowing that he people were
very devoted to him, they priests and scribes left defeated. Many
parables were issued on this day, of which some prophesy of the
rejection of Israel's leadership.
I found the final event of this
day to be highly emotional. For a brief moment, Jesus shares His burden
with those closest to Him. In John 12:27, Jesus shares His trepidation
for the coming events and makes a plea to be spared of what He knows is
coming. Unlike the similar plea that He will make in just a few short
days, Heavenly Father speaks in a voice that is heard by those nearby.
Jesus is reassured by the voice of His Father that He will be glorified.
know how my actions and my mood often are a direct reflection of what
is in my heart. When I have a task that I am hesitant to complete, I
know it shows in everything I do. My emotions were sparked as I realized
that our Savior knew the coming events and was concerned about them,
yet He went about the Father's work each and every day. I hope that as
you study this week, you will find yourself dedicating your full efforts
to aligning your will with that of the Father's, that you will gain a
deep appreciation for the events of this week so that your testimony
will be firm and fast in the atonement and resurrection of our Savior.
have included another Hymn, #59 "Come, Thou King of Kings". Though
there may not be a hymn for every day, this one struck me as good for
today for many reasons. First, you can use it for family home evening if
you would like. Second, as I have been studying this, the last week of
Christ's life, I am struck more than usual at how His role as King
became more apparent to His followers and His enemies. Again, select
words and music to hear the full version of the hymn.
* The cursing of the fig tree (Mark 11:12-14; Matthew 21:18-22)
* Mark's account of the cleansing of the Temple (Mark 11:15-19)
* Jesus' pattern of teaching in the temple (Luke 19:47-48)
* Teachings in the Temple (Mark 11:27-12:12; Matthew 21:23-22:15; Luke 20:1-19)
* Jesus and the coming hour (John 12:20-36)